October Dedicated to Honoring and Remembering Those Who Experienced Miscarriage, Stillbirth, or Infant Loss; Awareness, Training Essential
PORTLAND, Ore., Oct. 2, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Postpartum Support International (PSI) joins the global community in recognizing October as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. This poignant month is dedicated to people who have lost a pregnancy or infant to miscarriage, stillbirth, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), or any other cause.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, miscarriage and stillbirth both describe pregnancy loss, but a miscarriage is usually defined as loss of a baby before the 20th week of pregnancy, and a stillbirth is loss of a baby at 20 weeks of pregnancy and later.
Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month serves as an opportunity for individuals and organizations to raise awareness about the profound impact of pregnancy and infant loss on families. It is a time to create a safe space for open and compassionate conversations about grief and loss.
Pregnancy and infant loss are more common than most people realize, with millions of families affected worldwide. The March of Dimes suggests that more than 30 percent of pregnancies end in miscarriage. According to the CDC, each year about 24,000 babies are stillborn in the United States. The CDC reports that 19,920 deaths occurred in children younger than age one year in the United States in 2021, with an infant mortality rate of 543.6 infant deaths per 100,000 live births. PSI is committed to providing resources, education, and support to help individuals and families navigate the unique challenges that come with these types of loss.
“PSI stands in solidarity with those who have experienced the pain of pregnancy and infant loss and is committed to fostering a community of understanding and support,” said Dr. Wendy Davis, executive director of Postpartum Support International. “We are focused on educating and training medical and mental health professionals to ensure families receive compassionate care during and following the trauma of loss. Together, we can create a world where families feel heard, supported, and never alone.”
During this month of remembrance and support, PSI encourages everyone to:
Share Stories: Encourage open and honest conversations about pregnancy and infant loss. Sharing personal experiences can help break the stigma surrounding this topic and offer solace to those who are grieving.
Offer Support: Reach out to friends, family members, or colleagues who have experienced pregnancy or infant loss. A simple message of empathy and care can go a long way in helping someone through their grief.
Seek Help: If you or someone you know is struggling with grief after a pregnancy or infant loss, don’t hesitate to seek professional support. PSI offers a range of free resources, including a worldwide network of trained volunteers and mental health professionals, who can provide guidance and assistance. PSI also offers online support groups and meetings for those who have experienced loss.
Participate in Remembrance Events: Many organizations hold events and activities throughout October to honor and remember the babies who are no longer with us. Specifically, you can participate in the International Wave of Light by lighting a candle at 7 pm, local hour, on October 15 (World Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day) to honor all lost pregnancies and babies gone too soon. Keep your candle lit for at least one hour to create a continuous “wave of light” across all time zones covering the globe. Participating in these events can be a meaningful way to connect with others who share similar experiences.
For more information about Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month or to access resources for pregnancy and infant loss support, please visit http://www.postpartum.net/ or call the helpline at 1-800-944-4773. In addition to providing support and resources for families, PSI offers grief and loss training for medical and mental health professionals.
About Postpartum Support International
Founded by a new mother in 1987 to increase awareness among public and professional communities about the emotional difficulties women can experience during and after pregnancy, Postpartum Support International (PSI) offers a wealth of resources for a wide range of needs, situations, and audiences to help give families the strongest and healthiest start possible through support and community. PSI offers support, reliable information, best practice training and certification for healthcare professionals, and volunteer coordinators nationwide and in more than 30 countries. PSI is committed to eliminating stigma and ensuring that compassionate and quality care is available to all families. Need help? Call 1-800-944-4PPD (4773). Learn more at https://www.postpartum.net/
SOURCE Postpartum Support International
Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/postpartum-support-international-observes-pregnancy-and-infant-loss-awareness-month-301942873.html
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